Take a seat at the table with my family of four to experience fine dining like no other! Ralph Brennan’s Jazz Kitchen, located in Downtown Disney, is a favorite restaurant of ours because of the festive New Orleans French Quarter atmosphere, the excellent service, and wonderfully delicious authentic Creole and Cajun food. Enjoy this honest review of Ralph Brennan’s Jazz Kitchen to help you decide if this restaurant is one you will add to your favorite’s list!
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The Atmosphere at Jazz Kitchen
Ralph Brennan’s Jazz Kitchen brings the beauty of Louisiana’s New Orleans’s French Quarter to Downtown Disney. Intricate wrought-iron gates enclose a patio and balcony of this magnificent two-story restaurant.
Just under the cover of the green and white awning, right in the center of the restaurant, the entrance is equipped with a light-up menu board for passerby Guests interested in taking a peek at the menu. At the entrance into the open-air courtyard, hostesses are ready to greet Guests to either take their reservation or complete check in.
My family and I always make reservations to ensure we are guaranteed a seat. On this specific night, we checked in 15 minutes early. Guests are expected to wait in the small area just inside the entrance in front of the gorgeous water foundation adorned with New Orleans’ beads. Thankfully, we didn’t have to wait long because it can get a bit crowded and uncomfortable in this area since there really is not a designated waiting area.
To the right in the restaurant, Guests can dine in the Flambeaux’s Jazz Club where a solo pianist pumps out jazzy tunes weeknights. On weekends, alternating house bands have you taping your feet to a variety of jazz, New Orleans R&B, and zydeco Cajun musical styles. Since my family and I always dine at Ralph Brennan's Jazz Kitchen, we have been seated in this area once before and know that this dining room can get a bit loud.
My family and I were lucky to be escorted up the winding staircase to the second-level balcony. This is our favorite spot to dine – breathing in the warm, sweet Disney air with views of Downtown Disney. On cool nights, heaters are stationed around the balcony to keep Guests warm.
Ralph Brennan’s Jazz Kitchen’s menu is comprised of delicious southern flavors with a variety of starters, soups and salads, seafood, beef, poultry, sides, and desserts. What I love most about the restaurants in and around the Disneyland Resort is the ever-changing offerings on the seasonal menus. This specific dining experience at Jazz Kitchen offered many new and exciting dishes!
For starters, my family ordered the Southern Garlic Cheese Bread which is a staple on this fabulous menu. This is not your ordinary garlic bread. It is a delicious blend of basil, mozzarella, roasted garlic, and olive oil puree. Honestly, my family orders this every time we dine here! We highly recommend it!
And no visit to Ralph Brennan’s Jazz Kitchen is complete without their signature Gumbo Ya-Ya. My husband and I always order a bowl. This thick soup combines chicken, andouille sausage, dark roux, creole seasoning, and rice in one big bowl of spicy goodness. Yes, this soup is delicious with just the right amount of spicy kick.
For this special dining review, my family and I wanted to give more of the food on the menu a try and this was the best decision we made! We ordered the Boudin Balls which consisted of slow roasted cochon pork mixed with dirty rice. A flavor combination like no other, the Boudin Balls crunch with the first bite exposing the rich and savory pork and rice inside. And no Boudin Ball is complete without a dip in the thick, spicy Creole mustard aioli. I did not dip my Boudin Ball into the housemade pepper jelly, but my husband did and raved about the flavors!
My husband ordered the Grilled Medallions of Beef. He was served a generous portion of filet mignon resting on a bed of crawfish mashed potatoes and green beans, all swimming in a zinfandel reduction sauce. He absolutely loved this dish!
My eldest daughter ordered the Caesar Salad. Although my daughter loves spice, this night, she was in the mood for a subtle dish. She custom-ordered the Caesar salad minus the spicy sauce and added shrimp!
My youngest daughter ordered a cheese burger with fries. Although this dish is not listed on the menu, the restaurant accommodates her wishes every time we dine here! The burger is cooked to order. Her plate was completely empty by the end of dinner so I will say that is one great burger!
I ordered the Rosemary Chicken which is a pan-roasted French-cut chicken breast served with heirloom potatoes, broccolini with a rosemary-garlic white wine sauce. I don’t try to make the server’s job difficult but I know what I like. I switched up my side dishes and asked for the bacon-chive mashed potatoes instead of the heirloom potatoes. This type of potato is NOT on the side menu, but served with the Black & Blue Filet Mignon dish. I do this every time and our servers grant my request! My chicken was cooked to perfection.
My husband and I like to take advantage of the Litre Draft Beers. Ralph Brennan's Jazz Kitchen has a full beverage menu with many different choices of non-alcoholic, specialty drinks, wines, litre draft beers, and beers by the bottle.
At the start of your meal is normally not the time to be thinking about dessert, however, at Ralph Brennan’s Jazz Kitchen, it is a necessity if you will be ordering the Double Chocolate Bread Pudding Soufflé. The Double Chocolate Bread Pudding Soufflé takes 25 minutes to prepare and must be ordered with your meal. What happens if you get to dessert and request one? If you are willing to wait an additional 25-30 minutes for it, then you may be able to enjoy this decadent dessert. My husband loves this dessert and orders it every time we dine here.
No matter how stuffed my daughters and I are at the end of the meal, we will never miss a chance to order the beignets. This dessert is something out of a fairy tale with its warm, soft, fluffy donut-like texture covered with a mountain of powdered sugar. Delicious!
Ralph Brennan’s Jazz Kitchen: Is it Worth it?
I highly recommend Ralph Brennan’s Jazz Kitchen for dinner. Ralph Brennan’s Jazz Kitchen is expensive, however, for the quality (and quantity) of the food, dining here is well worth it!
My family and I have never eaten here for lunch, but if lunch is anything like dinner, it must be good. The lunch menu is slightly different than the dinner menu offering more of a variety of salads, burgers, po-boys, and sandwiches.
Jazz Kitchen to Go
The Jazz Kitchen Express is great when you are in a hurry, but still want the taste of some of Ralph Brennan’s Jazz Kitchen favorites. I stopped in for some fresh beignets to take home with me at the end of our vacation. I nibbled on some mini warm beignets right out the door. Honestly, they did not compare to what is served at the restaurant. I have to admit, I saved some beignets to take home, but they didn’t travel well. They became hard and lost all of their freshness. I’ll pass on beignets from Jazz Kitchen Express and opt for dining at Ralph Brennan’s Jazz Kitchen!
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